elemtilas wrote:I hope you won't take it amiss, but in my younger days I had little else to eat apart from rat! But rats in Gea do not talk or look like people of any sort! They're dirty animals that inhabit the sewers and live on filth -- but I shouldn't talk! In those days, we too were dirty People, inhabiting sewers and living on filth! Perhaps the closest we know of here are a people called Cresa -- Men call them wererats. I have never met one, but they say these Cresa are about four feet tall and are very clever.
I couldn't describe the look of our people better than likening us to rats, so there's a picture from one of the spacecrafts which brought us to our world: http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eigentlich ... igera1.jpg
We looked like this more than four million years ago, on a planet inhabited by homines
, that is, humans
. We know where their planet is and our scientists are working hard to get someone there. Scientists say that the homines
were facing a global disaster and had to make sure that at least some
of their fauna and flora survived.
I wonder who was so interested in our survival and future - they have shipped not only us through space, but also descriptions of machines, sciences, theories, pictures, sound recordings, film and digital data we have not even deciphered yet.
We would never suffer Men, nor Hotai, nor anyone else to cause such a disaster that the whole World became unfit to live in! That image -- I have never seen a creature like it!, though it kind of looks like a squirrel... It doesn't look much like the rats I've around the City, anyway! "Homines" are Men? Sounds foreign. Maybe Rumelian? They talk like that. I've heard some of the sailors say words like that: "omins, omins!" And the sailors turn and say "cafetan!"
If that is what your folk looked like long ago, do you look much different now? I think we've always looked very much like we do now...we certainly didn't look like birds in our youth!
And you too seem to have a history full of suffering and fear?
Yes. My father's country, that queendom that is now called Westmarche, was for a very long time under the dominion of invading Men and Daine became their slaves. That history has been overturned!
When you see your wererats, show them the picture I sent you and tell them I want to know more about them.
I shall! I am sure there must be sòme Cresa living in the City -- Auntimoany is the Great Stewpot, after all! There are us Daine, of course, and Men -- there are blaowemen
-- there are some folk called Gnomes, these are very skilled craftsmen and they work gems and metals mostly, and they are very fine artificers; there are the Werehounds, whom I've mentioned; there are Dwarrows, whose love is bronze, and iron when they can get it, there is one Dwarrow who has become a famous hair dresser, if you can credit that!
Oy! Tell me about your magic boxes!
We have many different forms of computers, from big walls of boards equipped with silicon chips down to tiny chips in our cars, phones and washing machines.
You have pegopansophicons in your walls and in your self-actuated laundry devices!? What is a 'car'? What is a 'phone'? I do like chips, though! I go down to Uncle Quham's Happy and Felicitatious Family Eating Establishment of Telerani Cookery and Cuisine -- that's a mouthfull, isn't it! -- they do a really good chicken and hot goober paste with salt-n-vinegar chips! Mmm! Extra strong vinegar please!
Umm. Why do you put chips in your self-actuating laundry device?? Do you eat while doing your laundry? We don't have a laundry machine, because Mother's sister is afraid the dwimmery will get all out of control. I've heard wild stories, but our neighbour has one -- one of Lord Maytagge's new Mark VI All-In-Ones -- and I haven't heard where it's given them any trouble. But we usually just go to one of the public laundries. They do a good job, and it's not like we have anywhere near as much clothing as most Men. Sometimes for the heck of it, we'll go down to the aqueduct spillway and do our washing there -- and then we can splash about in the cold water for a while and have some fun!
Oh, yes, pegopanshophicons...
Our computers, which are working with just a binary number system, can receive voice commands, but the technology is rather limited.
Can you expand your pegopansophicons? We can, either by plugging in an extra board into the main board or by connecting extra peripherals in the rear connectors.
Also, our computers are keeping this inter-dimensional connection up, a mainframe from every country in my world is dedicated to the data stream reaching all of you (and, it seems, our software works too well, translating every term, even those I didn't want to be translated).
I wish your magic box could translate what you just said, because even though you're talking Avantimannish, I can't make head nor foot of half of what you just said! You must be very dwimcrafty indeed to understand how
your pegopansophicons work!
But yes, we can expand the box's capacities. For example, if I liked to make many iconographic images (and make them of a large size) I can go back to the artificer and have him install an ART -- an Archive Retrieval Tablet. The imps inside will paint the images upon this tablet, which can then be removed and other imps inside a different box, will repaint those images upon a much larger art canvass. Pretty nifty, that! But I think the little images that come out of the box are okay as is! It is possible to exchange one Inter Face for a new one -- but I've heard that Inter Faces can become a bit touchy if you try to change them. I guess they become attached to their mistresses or masters and feel quite put out if they're to be dismissed. One handy thing is that I can swap out the imps that know all the books: like, one imp can usually remember two or three books, so if I have a big library, I'd need a lot of imps that know all the books! Happily, there is a little brass door on the side where I can extract one case that holds a book imp and slide another case in. Then thát imp becomes ready to recite from the book I want to hear!
Are the board you shove into your computers written upon? Is that how your computers recite? I know the Daine of Westmarche carve their writings upon boards. When their reciters read, they close their eyes and touch the boards to read what's written there!
I meant to ask: what are the tiles for in front of the Inter Face? It looks like a game -- is it a board for a game? I like board games -- I'm pretty good at foxes and ludo; not so good at shatarancge or taula. On second thought, I think I like games at cards better! What kinds of games do you play? You said you have playing grounds for your little ones; what about for older folk? Or do they not like to play games any more??
Thank you very much! We are learning not only about ourselves, but also about the humans who were here before us - for a very short time before moving on to another planet, so we know about and respect more than just ourselves.
So, there are no Men in your world? I think that would be sad; it would mean much destruction and war and the end of many fair things! But the philosophers say this is to be our fate indeed!
Our schools are big buildings, centered around a playground and a small garden. For children before the age of seven (but not younger than four), there is a kindergarden - very useful for the parents who have to work (or lone parents).
Elementary schools have a more playful approach on a basic education (reading, writing, basic mathematical skills and sports) than high-schools.
We also have religious education, in a separate building, once a week for two hours (it's the seventh day, the Jòrno Sabeto or 'Day of Knowledge'), with separate rooms for the separate beliefs - and we're learning about the other beliefs. Visiting the church school is boring sometimes, but it's required in the school curriculum.
Oh, that sounds very lovely! I do so love gardens! I do not know what the inside of a school for the children of Men looks like; but we Daine school our little ones at home or sometimes several families together will teach them all in a bunch. Are your high schools built up on pillars or a hill? I don't think Men have schools of religion for their children, but I know the Kristians and the Jews and the Boddhians all have monasteries where their young men study for their priesthoods. We learn the songs and stories of the Powers and the Heavenly Father from a young age.
And we have universities (I'm visiting the one in the capital Buonavalle), where we learn about the things we like - apart from courses which prepare us for an academic career or working as a teacher.
We have universities, too. There are three, I think, here in the City. One of them is for students of physick and philosophy; another is for the Philosophical Arts -- I have a young cousin who is studying there. She is one of very few Daine who take a formal course at university. She wishes to study architecture, so she can conserve the ancient stone works of the Teyor in our cities.
Werehounds? We had legends about werewolves.
Oh, yes! Werehounds are quite different than Werewolves! They are gentle folk, retiring and intelligent.
I guess your werehounds don't want to be prosecuted, they are afraid of being killed because they are different from 'normal people'.
Do not fear them; the more one knows, the better he can help.
Oh, we don't fear them -- if anything, they are deathly afraid of us Daine! But for no good reason. We have no cause to wish them any harm. I tried talking with one once, but she kept insisting I was wrong. Huh. We are nòt wrong about those things! For one, their aura is all different. Two, we get a different feeling when in their presence than we get in the presence of other Men. I would help, but they are so afraid to teach us anything about themselves...